Some of us may have gone overboard checking out Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, but it would be a mistake to forget the day of charity that comes after with GivingTuesday.
Part of a global movement founded in 2012, GivingTuesday is a celebration of non-profits/charities and the efforts that go into making our world a better place. Canada has long maintained a reputation as a generous nation, something represented in Calgary’s 2300+ charities that work daily to change people’s lives for the better. Whether it’s for a sports program, food bank, health relief fund, or immigrant-serving charity, here are some ways you can participate in this day of empowerment.
One of the easiest ways to celebrate GivingTuesday is to get social. This can be done by sharing stories about your favourite local charities on Facebook or Twitter using the hashtags #GivingTuesdayCA or #GivingTuesday. You can upload photos showing where you help out, or share a video telling others about a cause that you’re passionate about. Sharing your voice and showing your support is essential to GivingTuesday’s success.
Share Your Time
Volunteering your time is an exceptional gift, both for yourself and others. Not only does it use your skills to make a lasting difference, but research has shown that it can have a positive medical effect on your brain and is good for your health by counteracting the effects of stress, anger, and anxiety. By helping others, you build social connections and strengthen relationships with new friends. Volunteering is also a great way for families to bond and share fulfilling moments together!
Few people know that only 43% of non-profits in Alberta operate with paid staff and many rely heavily on volunteers for their daily activities. This is true at CIES, and since 1988 our volunteers have donated over 196,000 hours to support immigrants and refugees – a record we plan on breaking next year as we celebrate our 30th anniversary. If you’re looking to help out, think about providing translation assistance or teaching one of our ESL classes. You can check out our frequently updated flexible opportunities for the latest opportunities.
Give From The Heart
If you don’t have the time, or can’t find the words, you can always donate by giving financially. Last year, 98 countries participated in in GivingTuesday and recent studies have shown that more than 80% of Canadians over the age of 15 donate. It’s easier than ever to donate online and if you plan to make a donation over $25 you’d also be eligible for an income tax deduction. Donations made to CIES online can be directed to general classes, our scholarship fund, childminding department, or “Most Needed” campaigns.
Donating money isn’t the only way to give. Other examples include donating old children’s books, musical instruments, or toys to local campaigns like our Fill This Basket Children’s Donation Drive. Whatever way you choose to give, your gift is helping your neighbours and community grow stronger, together.